Bits From Abroad

April 2012

The Chief of the Russian Army General Staff has said the Russian Armed Forces are ready to retaliate to any threat to the country’s security, including by using nuclear weapons. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin says Russia must replace its Soviet-built arsenals with modern weapons to counter new evolving threats.

 The 2012 Nuclear Security Summit will be held in Seoul in March. The ‘People’s Action Against 2012 Seoul Nuclear Security Summit’ is calling for a Nuclear Free world saying this is the only way to true security.

North Korea has told the United States that it is ready to suspend its uranium enrichment program in exchange for food aid.

 IRAN
Inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency said their latest visit to Iran had ended in failure. Tehran not only blocked their access to a site they believe could have been used for tests on how to produce a nuclear weapon, but it also refused to agree to a process for resolving questions about other possible military uses of its nuclear programme. However, Iran has agreed to further talks. In February, Iran’s Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, in a meeting with officials of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran and nuclear scientists in Tehran, said:
“The Iranian nation has never been after nuclear weapons and it will never go after such weapons. The Iranian nation will prove to the world that nuclear weapons do not bring about power”

American intelligence analysts continue to believe that there is no hard evidence that Iran has decided to build a nuclear bomb. They say that, while there has been mounting evidence of Iranian work on enrichment facilities, there has been far less evidence of a weapons programme.

In talks with Barack Obama, the Israeli Prime Minister warned that, unless the president makes a firm pledge to use US military force to prevent Iran acquiring a nuclear bomb, Israel may well take matters into its own hands within months. The US President cautioned against “Lose talk of war”, calling for patience in ending the nuclear stand-off with Iran. A coalition of senators has promised that the U.S. would take military action against Iran if they became “capable of” producing nuclear weapons. “Capable” is not defined.